When planning their estate, Muslims in Singapore are subject to Syariah law. A will under Syariah law is commonly known as a wasiat. Like a civil will, the wasiat sets out how the deceased’s estate is to be distributed. There are several things to note when writing a wasiat.
You must be at least 21 years old and of sound mental capacity in order to prepare your wasiat.
The signing of the wasiat must be witnessed by at least two other people. The witnesses cannot be male Muslims who are beneficiaries of the wasiat.
There are more limitations to a wasiat then a civil will. For example, the estate to be included in the wasiat may not amount to more than one-third of the estate. In addition, the beneficiaries under the wasiat cannot also be a faraid heir. Examples of faraid heirs are parents, spouse, children, grandchildren, and siblings.
In addition to preparing a wasiat, it is recommended to prepare a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) as well. An LPA allows you to appoint someone that you trust to make decisions for you in the event you are unable to make decisions for yourself due to “an impairment of, or a disturbance in the functioning of, the mind or brain.”
A hibbah is a gift under Syariah law. It is one of the tools used in estate planning by Syariah lawyers.
More considerations arise where a Muslim has made civil law arrangements, such as wills and trusts, and where the Muslim was a convert, i.e. not Muslim at birth.
IRB Law has one of the largest Syariah law practices, with more than 10 lawyers and paralegals with expertise in this unique area of law. Our Syariah law practitioners are conversant in Malay, Tamil, Chinese and English.
Speak to our team today to get a full understanding of your rights and obligations.
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